Experiment Station Road: Stories from the Journey

Experiment Station Road: Stories from the Journey coverBeneath the most successful pear industry in the nation, blight grows and plucks at the lives of the residents in the Rogue River Valley. It’s the 60’s. An orchard-dependent economy in Southern Oregon.  Migrant workers. Cesar Chavez. Prejudice. Tolerance. Injustice. Faith. Everybody has a story. Six separate tales stir the puzzle pieces of a plot, while characters step in and out of one another’s stories through flashbacks, cameo appearances, and intimate encounters. The characters rub shoulders and expose one another’s secrets, prejudices, and reckonings with fate and the Divine. As single stories meld, a larger chronicle emerges.

As a child, Ellen “Pebble” Merrill learns early that there are two sets of standards for humanity. One includes the Anglos and her family, and the other the Mexican migrants who provide the labor that drives the orchard industry in the small town of Hayford. Ellen discovers, through a spider web of orchard back roads, a boarded-up experiment station, a migrant community, hidden prejudice, and suffocated dreams. Each story moves from humor and nostalgic memories to intense confrontations between the characters and their biting choices. Some choose progress and the turmoil of change, and others opt to settle and stagnate. Ellen’s revelation is clear: the value of a solo voice lifted in a community of noise shakes up the world and allows the experiment to continue.

5F, 5M, doubling required. Running time: 2 hours. Unit set. Royalty: $75 per performance. Click here to contact Gwen Mansfield regarding licensing and royalties.

cover design by Sherri M. Miller

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